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Online Novel Writing Master Class

Learn how to write your novel with a bestselling author

NOVEL WRITING MASTER CLASS 2017 is now open for enrollment.

Go to the fall 2017 session of the Online Novel Writing Master Class.

Do you have a novel in progress? Do you need motivation, feedback, and deadlines to help you complete it?

This class is open to writers who are in the process of writing or revising a novel. You will spend two months writing, shaping, and revising your novel in progress.

This class is right for you if:

You are committed to writing or revising 5-10 pages per week.

You want to find the best structure for your novel, create suspense, make the characters more complex, develop your plot, and write a memorable ending.

You've struggled with your novel-in-progress, or your novel needs a kick-start.

You need deadlines to help you get the words on the page.

In this 8-week course, you will:

  • Write about 80 pages of your novel..
  • Get feedback from the instructor on your work (a value of over $750).
  • Participate in weekly video meetings to ask questions about craft and process.
  • Make sure that your inciting action is novel-worthy
  • Identify the "big idea" of your novel and make sure that it is present in the scenes
  • Intensify the series of complications that arise over the course of your novel
  • Make sure that the way your protagonist responds to these complications is both dramatic and memorable

Course Structure

  • Each week, you will be asked to write 8-10 pages. You will receive feedback on the pages from the instructor. You may also choose to exchange critiques with other writers.
  • Your first submission will be due on January 27. The purpose of the deadline is to make sure that I get to read and respond to a chapter by every student early on in the class. After that, you are welcome to submit every TWO weeks if you prefer. This is useful if you prefer submitting longer excerpts for me to read.
  • The focus of this class is on writing, and that's what I'd like you to devote your time to as much as possible!
  • I will post weekly assignments geared toward helping you achieve specific goals in terms of plot, characterization, and scene. However, the assignments are intended to serve as guideposts and are not nearly as important as buckling down and writing!
  • I have created a series of written and video lectures that I believe address the most pressing concerns of novelists. However, the focus is on WRITING. The lectures are supplementary to the main event of writing.
  • During the weekly live meetings, we'll explore craft and process, and I'll address your specific questions and concerns.
  • I am always eager to address your concerns as they arise. To that end, I welcome questions and suggestions about subjects that you want to discuss in our video meetings,
  • For our video meetings, we use Zoom, a free app that can easily be downloaded to your computer, smartphone, or tablet.


If you're serious about your writing and have been considering getting a professional critique of your work, the Novel Writing Master Class offers a great return on your investment. I rarely accept new private clients (see private editing rates here), but when you enroll in this class, you will receive my feedback on a significant portion of your novel.

What kind of feedback will you receive? I will provide feedback on characterization, plot, structure, voice, dialogue, style, and other elements of your novel. My feedback will not include extensive line edits; instead, I will be focusing on the big picture of your story and the success of your scenes and chapters.

If you prefer not to share your work just yet, you may choose the non-critique option, which will give you access to everything except feedback.

Can I repeat this class?

Yes! If you took the Novel Writing Master Class in November and have new chapters you want to write, I encourage you to take this class! While many of the video and written lectures will be familiar to you from the previous course, the live meetings will be entirely new and will now be held primarily on Saturdays to accommodate everyone. Once again, you'll be receiving critique on your novel-in-progress. Returning students receive a 10% discount.

Your Instructor

Michelle Richmond
Michelle Richmond

Michelle Richmond is the author of five novels, including the New York Times bestseller The Year of Fog, and two award-winning story collections. Her books have been sold in 28 languages. She has taught in the MFA programs in creative writing at the University of San Francisco, California College of the Arts, St. Mary's College of Moraga, Bowling Green State University, and Notre Dame de Namur University, where she held the Catherine Julie Cunningham Chair. She has also taught novel writing online for Stanford Continuing Studies. She earned an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Miami, where she was a James Michener Fellow. She is the founder and publisher of Fiction Attic Press.

Michelle's articles on narrative craft have appeared in The Writer's Chronicle, Writer's Digest, and Glimmer Train's newsletter for writers, and her essays about literature have appeared in The Believer and Oxford American. Her stories and essays have also appeared in Glimmer Train, The Kenyon Review, The Missouri Review, The Telegraph, The Guardian, Lonely Planet, and many other magazines, newspapers, and anthologies.

Class Curriculum

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This course is not open for enrollment.